The 1975 have returned, following a brief disappearance from social media (causing ripples of panic to their fans), with their mammoth 17-track sophomore album I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It. The record was released worldwide on 26th February 2016, swiftly followed by a tour across the UK and Europe.
The album begins with echoes of their debut release, reminding us of the band’s transition to a newer, brighter sound. ‘The 1975’ is an interlude, building up to ‘Love Me’, the first single released in the lead up to this sophomore album. The latter provides a social commentary on fame and its bizarre celebrity culture, almost mocking themselves in a world where a selfie is a modern-day autograph.
Showcasing Matty’s skills as an excellent wordsmith, ‘UGH!’ describes a tale of self-awareness of toxic behaviour, recognising a person’s knack for being self-absorbed and disregarding everyone else in the room. The dark narrative contrasts with the bubbly, upbeat tune, leaving you feel a little out-of-step with Matty’s thoughts.
‘A Change of Heart’ slows down the pace, bringing back those echoes of The 1975’s self-titled debut album, almost commenting on old lyrics and saying that things are different now; the band have reinvented themselves into something brighter; more receptive, and socially aware. The 1975 have never adherred to one set of rules, genre or style. They’ve chameleoned their way through the music industry but in a way that isn’t superificial; they’ve just created what they wanted, without listening to the demands of anyone else.
‘If I Believe You’ starts off weird and a little bizarre, making it all too easy to skip to the next track. Hold on a minute and you’ll hear the choir, making the song more beautiful but it’s still not enough to keep me interested. ‘Please Be Naked’ opens in the same manner, demanding you listen for almost a minute before the song actually begins. This one feels most nostalgic, holding onto wistful memories and allowing you to pause for breath in a song that contains no words. It’s stripped down and simple, encouraging you to build your own narrative.
The album wakes up again with ‘The Ballad Of Me And My Brain’ as Matty delves into his mental health; the song itself evolving into something chaotic and desperate. ‘Somebody Else’ adds a dash of melancholy and loss to the already complex album, ensuring there’s a song for all situations and moods. The ludicrously long album title shares its name with a song that could almost soundtrack a videogame, optimistic tones bouncing around as you imagine your protagonist exploring a fictional world in order to save the princess.
I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It is an experimental record, pushng the boundaries for cult-pop band The 1975, and cementing their presence in the music industry forever. From bold pop tunes to atmospheric melodies, The 1975 have given us a remarkable record that may leave you feeling a little lost once it’s all over.